Krishnagiri – General Information
Krishnagiri district is a district in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The municipal town of Krishnagiri is the district headquarters. In Tamil Nadu, e-Governance was first introduced at Krishnagiri district under the National e-Governance Project (NEGP) in revenue and social welfare departments on a pilot basis. The district is one of the largest producers of Mangoes in India. As of 2011, the district had a population of 1,879,809 with a sex-ratio of 958 females for every 1,000 males
The holy land of wise scholars, men of valour and courage, blessed with the green valleys, hills and hillocks and inhabited by people known for innovative farming was divided, for the formation of Krishnagiri district, carved out of Dharmapuri district as 30th district of Tamil Nadu.
Krishnagiri district is bounded by Vellore and Thiruvannamalai districts in the East, Karnataka state in the west, State of Andhra Pradesh in the North Dharmapuri District in the south. Its area is 5143 Sq. Kms. This district is elevated from 300m to 1400m above the mean sea level. It is located between 11º 12'N to 12º 49'N Latitude, 77º 27'E to 78º 38'E Longitude. Eastern part of the district experiences hot climate and Western part has a contrasting cold climate. The average rainfall is 830 mm per annum. March - June is summer season. July - November is Rainy Season and between December - February winter prevails. Three languages namely Tamil, Telugu and Kannada are predominantly spoken in this district. Major religions are Hindu, Islam and Christianity. This district stands as an ideal exhibit of National integration and religious harmony. The society exhibit the confluence of different languages and religions.
'Krishna' refers to 'black' and 'giri' refers to 'hill'. The area contains many granite hillocks hence the name 'Krishnagiri'. The region was under the rule of Krishna Deva Raya and hence it might also have been named after him.
The Krishnagiri district has a prehistoric importance. Archeological sources confirm the presence of habitats of mankind during Paleolithic, Neolithic and Mesolithic Ages. Various rock paintings and rock carvings of Indus Valley civilization and Iron Age seen in this district support the historical significance of this district.
Krishnagiri region is a part of the ancient Kongu Nadu and Chera country. Historically it was ruled by Kongu and Chera rulers. Later the region came under Cholas, Pallavas, Gangas, Nulambas, Hoysalas, Vijaya Nagar and Bijapur emperors, Wodeyars of Mysore and Nayaks of Madurai. This region of Krishnagiri served as "Gateway of Tamil Nadu" and the protective barrier for Southern region defending onslaughts from barriers with motives of imperialism and exploitation. Krishnagiri Fort becomes the first and forth most defensive place. The majestic fortress built on Krishnagiri hill by the Vijaya Nagar Emperors, stands as testimony still now.
During Mysore war I the British troops passed through Krishnagiri to attack Hyder Ali's Forces at Kaveripattinam. British army was defeated here. In Mysore war II after the "Treaty of Srirangapattinam" entire region of Salem and Barah Mahal were surrendered to the British. In 1792 AD, Captain Alexander Reed became the first District Collector of this region. Under the diplomacy of Robert Clive, the then Governor of Madras Presidency, Krishnagiri became the headquarters of Bara Mahal.
A mint was established at Krishnagiri in 1794 AD. Gold, silver and copper coins were forged here. Many soldiers from Krishnagiri region took part in the world war and lost their lives. The "Mango of Krishnagiri", Dr. C. Rajagopalachari, who hailed from a small village in this district rose to the highest position in the nation as the first Governor General of independent India, leader of the Congress Party, and as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. Thiru. Mangat Ram Sharma, I.A.S. has administered the office as first Collector of Krishnagiri District.
The historical importance and potential growth in education, economy and tourism of present Krishnagiri made it necessary to create a separate district. Krishnagiri was formed as 30th district by the Government of Tamil Nadu. Krishnagiri district was carved out of Dharmapuri district on 9 February 2004 with five taluks and ten blocks.
According to 2011 census, Krishnagiri district had a population of 1,879,809 with a sex-ratio of 963 females for every 1,000 males, much above the national average of 929. A total of 217,323 were under the age of six, constituting 112,832 males and 104,491 females. Scheduled accounted for 14.22% and 1.19% of the population respectively. The average literacy of the district was 63.2%, compared to the national average of 72.99%. The district had a total of 448,053 households. There were a total of 877,779 workers, comprising 218,600 cultivators, 197,369 main agricultural labourers, 15,237 in house hold industries, 310,795 other workers, 135,778 marginal workers, 17,438 marginal cultivators, 65,959 marginal agricultural labourers, 6,681 marginal workers in household industries and 45,700 other marginal workers. Tamil is the official and majorly spoken language while Telugu, Kannada & urdu also spoken in parts of the district. Hinduism is the major religion followed by Islam and Christian minorities.
Climate and weather
Krishnagiri experiences tropical climate during the summer. Summer is generally warm and dry. Monsoon season brings substantial amount of rainfall to this region and Krishnagiri experiences a long monsoon. Winters are generally pleasant and comfortable. This is the best time to visit the place. There are three distinct seasons that can be seen in Krishnagiri. Summer is from the months of March to June. During this time temperatures are warm and mercury rise up to around 38 °C and dipping a minimum of 32 °C. April and May are generally the hottest months of the year and the heat could be uncomfortable.
Monsoon season is from the months of July to November. During this time temperatures are mild and pleasant. Heavy rainfall can be expected in short intervals. Monsoon season is also a good time to visit as there are breaks in the rainfall. December to February constitutes the winter months and there are the best times to visit the place.
The national fruit of India and of the state of Tamil Nadu is mango. The major crop of Krishnagiri district with 300.17 km² area of cultivation is mango. The district produces 300,000 tons annually and in Tamil Nadu Krishnagiri District is the First Place in The Production of Mango. Almost 20% of the mango varieties like ‘Thothapuri’ and ‘Alphonso’ that are produced in this district are processed into pulp. In addition to mango pulp processing, tones of mangoes are processed into juice every year in this district. A large-scale mango export zone has been approved for the Krishnagiri district. This will allow growing as well as processing of mangoes thus yielding higher profits for the farmers.
Approximately 25 industries located in these district process mangoes. Much of the population in this district is employed through mango cultivation directly and other labour class benefit through employment in mango processing units. There are about 150 mango nurseries which produce mango saplings in and around ‘Santhur Village‘. The district exports mango based products worth over 8 billion. Under the horticulture development program, government owned horticulture farms are functioning here. Through these units, about 300,000 fruit saplings are produced and distributed under different schemes. Apart from production and export, Krishnagiri also hosts Mango exhibition every year which is the unique in its kind in line with the annual exhibition held at New Delhi.
Flora & Fauna
The major wild animals include Elephants, Sambar, Spotted Deer, Gaur, Wild boar, Panther etc. The forest area of Denkanikottai Taluk forms the prime elephant habitat with lot of bamboos and this area constitutes the Cauvery elephant reserve, which is constituted over and area of about 450 Sq. Kms. The bird population is also attractive with beautiful bird like Paradise flycatcher. Big lakes in Anchetti and Hosur areas also attract large number of migratory birds like Painted storks, Teals etc. Apart from these birds and mammals, there are variety of butterflies, giant spiders etc. that are coming under endangered list. Kodakkarai shoal forest in Denkanikottai Taluk is known for large scale migratory butterflies during a particular season then one can observe thousands of migratory butterflies passing through this forest like a passing cloud.
The district is a paradise for natural lovers. The flora includes variety of timber trees like Rose wood, Teak, Sandal etc. Hundreds of medicinal herbs, minor forest plants like nelli, kadukkai, cheekai, pungam etc. The following trees like 'Charakkonnai' ('Cassia histula'). Since pungam trees are found in abundance in this forest pungam oil is extracted from this seeds of this tress which is a non pollutant Bio-fuel.
Sketches of James Hunter
James Hunter served as a Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery. He was a military painter, and his sketches portrayed aspects of military and everyday life. Hunter served the British India Army and took part in Tippu Sultan Campaigns. Hunter has sketched different landscapes of South India, including Bangalore, Mysore, Hosur, Kancheepuram, Madras, Arcot, Sriperumbadur, etc.
These paintings were published in 'A Brief history of ancient and modern India embellished with coloured engravings', published by Edward Orme, London between 1802-05. Hunter died in India in 1792.
Krishnagiri played a strategic role in the battles of the Third Mysore War (1792). During the latter half of the 18th century, large areas of southern India were controlled by Haider Ali Khan (c.1722 - 1782) and his son, Tipu Sultan (1753 -1799), the kings of Mysore. Their armies were also stationed at the hill-forts (droogs) such as this one. The 4 Anglo-Mysore wars produced a spate of publications and paintings portraying and describing events of the various campaigns.
Krishnagiri is well connected to various parts of India through several National Highways that include Krishnagiri – Ranipet NH 46, Pondicherry-Krishnagiri NH 66, Krishnagiri – Madanapalli NH 219 & Varanasi –Kanyakumari via Krishnagiri NH 7. Krishnagiri connects 3 different states i.e. Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
The National Highway from Hosur to Krishnagiri is currently undergoing expansion from four-lanes to six-lanes.
The new bus stand on the outskirts of the town is well connected by government buses and private carriers to Chennai, Bangalore, Coimbatore and other major cities and towns in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Puducherry.
The nearest railway junction is Kuppam, Andhra Pradesh (35 km) and Jolarpet (60 km) and the nearest railway station is Rayakottai (30 km). A proposal is before the central government - via Jolarpet-Hosur route to build a Railway station in Krishnagiri thus making it part of the Indian railway network. This is set to facilitate trade of textiles and fruits.
As per new budget report, the proposed new line would take off from Jolarpet Junction, Tirupattur and pass through Kandili, Bargur, Krishnagiri and Shoolagiri a length of 104 km to join at Rayakottai. Another survey was conducted for a new rail link between Krishnagiri and Dharmapuri in 2004-05.